In an emotionally charged courtroom, at the Jefferson County Justice Center in Ohio, two high school football players have been found guilty of raping a druken 16-year-old girl in a non-jury trial on Sunday.
You could hear and see the crying and sobbing in the courtroom as Lipps invoked the sentencing; Trent Mays, 17 and Ma’lik Richmond, 16 both delinquent - considered guilty in adult court.
Mays will be sentenced to a minimum of two years, and Richmond a minimum of one year in juvenile detention. The maximum sentencing for both teens is until they reach age 21.
Mays gets more time than Richmond because he transmitted sexually oriented photos of a minor.
The accuser is not named because she did not want to be publicized in the media. She said the following morning that she had no idea of what had occurred. Her clothes were missing and she was embarrassed and the teens boys were present at the time.
Witnesses testified that they saw the teen girl being raped in August 2012, less than a year ago. Witnesses said the teens first digitally penetrated the girl in a car, then again at the party. Prosecutors proved that the young girl was significantly impaired and extremely vulnerable.
The families of both Mays and Richmond spoke at the sentencing and apologized for the actions of the football players. Ma’lik Richmond’s father gave a long eloquent dissertation of apology and pleaded with the court: “I am sorry that I was not there for Ma’lik…I feel responsible. God can fix this. I apologize to the world. I apologize for the bad light that has been shown on Steubenville and the world.” Richmond further talked about how alcohol can destroy a person's life.
The teens were immediately remanded to the custody of the Department of Youth Services.
Steubenville, Ohio will never be the same again.